Ryan Bertrand to make permanent Southampton transfer in January

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Chelsea full-back Ryan Bertrand is set to make his season-long loan move to Southampton permanent in January, according to the Daily Mirror.

The south coast club have an option to sign the 25-year-old for £10 million, and will activate that clause at the turn of the year after an impressive five-month spell at St Mary's.

Last week, Saints handed a five-year contract to talented young defender Matt Targett, but manager Ronald Koeman wants both he and Bertrand to continue fighting for the left-back berth next season.

Jose Mourinho won't stand in the way of Bertrand's desire to leave, as he looks to secure regular first-team football - which hasn't been afforded to him in west London.

However, Chelsea fans will be sad to see him go as it represents another failure for a promising academy graduate that wasn't given a fair chance to make the grade at Stamford Bridge.

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Bertrand had looked set to make a senior breakthrough under the former management of Roberto Di Matteo, after being named as a surprise starter in the 2012 Champions League final against Bayern Munich.

He became the first player ever to make his debut in Europe's elite club competition in the final, and was rewarded for his impressive run of form that season with a new five-year contract that was reportedly worth £35,000-a-week.

The former England U21 international was forced to bide his time patiently after joining Chelsea from Gillingham in 2005, and didn't make his first-team debut until April 2011, spending the majority of his early days at the club out on loan.

Patience pays off

However, Di Matteo clearly saw Bertrand as a possible successor to veteran Ashley Cole on the left side of the Blues defence and made it his responsibility to integrate the player into the senior fold.

But, following his departure - and Mourinho's eventual appointment - Bertrand has fallen down the first-team pecking order again, following the arrival of Filipe Luis from Atletico Madrid and the Portuguese coach's tendency to pick Spanish right-back Cesar Azpilicueta on the opposite flank.

Bertrand spent the second half of last season at Aston Villa, and after returning to west London in pre-season he penned a deal with Southampton for the duration of the 2015/16 campaign.

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Ryan Bertrand
Premier League

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